JAB Smart provides comprehensive harm reduction services to people who inject drugs (PWIDs) and their partners. Currently the project is working in Johannesburg, Region F, with plans to expand to Ekurhuleni.
Due to the frequency of sharing needles and common risky sexual behaviour, PWIDs have been identified as key populations, meaning they are vulnerable to HIV, tuberculosis, viral hepatitis and other blood-borne infections. They also face stigma, prejudice and lack of access to required health services. The most commonly injected drug in South Africa is heroine.
Currently the project is reaching PWIDs via their mobile health unit which travels to the areas where there is a high concentration of PWIDs. Staff provides harm reduction packs which includes bulk clean needles/syringes, alcohol swabs, filters, sterile water, cooking gear plus condoms and lubricant, and nuanced HIV-related information. They are offered testing for HIV and other STIs. Those that test positive are then linked to a clinic so they can start on treatment. They are also provided with basic wound management services.